Liverpool not conceding defeat in title race just yet, says captain Henderson
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Liverpool not conceding defeat in title race just yet, says captain Henderson

Despite being significantly behind champions-elect Manchester City, the Reds Captain believes Liverpool cannot give up on the top-prize just yet.

Joshua Kerr

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson believes his team have not given up on the title despite being a staggering 15 points behind the runaway leaders who also claimed the first piece of silverware of the season on Sunday after thumping Arsenal 3-0 at Wembley in convincing fashion.

Manchester City won the Carabao Cup as they defeated Arsene Wenger's side with relative ease.

City have been nothing shy of majestic at times this season, dominating the league from start to finish and the two-time-Premier League winners could become the first team to reach 100 points over a season.

The rest of the 19 teams in the English top-flight haven't been able to get even close to the leading pack throughout the campaign, with many pundits and fans already crowning them as champions very early into the season. 

Pep Guardiola looks home and hosed – but Henderson insists Liverpool will not concede the title race to Manchester City until the mathematicians lay down their calculators.

City’s 13-point lead looks impregnable, but the race for second place could hinge on Liverpool’s trip to Old Trafford a week on Saturday.

Henderson said: “You’ve got to keep going – Manchester City have a healthy gap at the top, and the title is theirs to lose more than anything – but we are Liverpool. We can’t just give up.

“As a club, we have a lot to play for until the end of the season, in terms of Premier League points and, hopefully, more games in the Champions League.

“We’ve got a healthy squad who want to work hard, to win, and it’s still pretty tight in terms of finishing in the top four.

“We go to Manchester United in about 10 days - that’s always a massive game, and this season is no different. It could have a big influence on where we finish.”

"We're going in the right direction"

Henderson also spoke to the media about his satisfaction with the Reds memorable night in Portugal a fortnight ago, the 27-year-old immediately called for the Reds to make such performances their par.

The Liverpool captain was instrumental against the undefeated Primeira Liga leaders but insists he had moved on from the Reds stunning win at the Estadio Dragao within minutes of the 5-0 result in the Champions League being secured.

A hat-trick from Sadio Mane, plus goals in either half by Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino, ensured Jürgen Klopp’s secured the thrashing of a side that has only been beaten once all season as well as a scoreline that leaves them in a commanding position to reach the quarter-finals of the Champions League.

Only an unthinkable collapse at home next week will deny Liverpool – five goals to the good from the away leg against Porto – a place in the last eight of the continents biggest prize.

None of Europe's big guns will fancy running the gauntlet of Jurgen Klopp’s free-flowing attack and the electric atmosphere only Anfield can generate on European nights.

While they may be considered outsiders for the main prize,  Klopp's men boast a forward line that has now scored 28 goals in the competition making them this season's Champions League top-scorers so far, and they are fast becoming a team that can be considered a dark horse for the main prize.

Jordan Henderson went on to say: “Let’s take nothing for granted because we have to finish the job in the second leg against Porto next week, but there are not many teams who would want to draw Liverpool at the minute,

“We’re confident that we’re capable of beating anyone if we play well.

“I’ve been here at Liverpool for nearly seven years and I’ve had some good times, but there’s a lot more I want to achieve.

“Year by year I feel I’ve improved as a player but you are judged on what you do as a team and I feel we belong among the top teams in the world.

“It’s about giving everything to make it happen so we can be the best in the Premier League, and also the best in Europe, over the next couple of years.

“We’re going in the right direction", the Reds skipper finished.